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Bangladesh takes bold steps to cut carbon emissions

Published : 28 Mar 2023 10:15 PM

Foreign Minister Dr AK Abdul Momen on Tuesday said that they had taken "bold steps", such as banning single-use plastic bags and implementing policies, to reduce carbon emissions. 

"We must continue our efforts to combat climate change and protect our oceans as they are highly interlinked  and the communities that depend on them," he said.

The foreign minister was inaugurating the Ninth Intergovernmental Session of the IOC Regional Committee for the Central Indian Ocean (IOCINDIO-IX), Dhaka, Bangladesh being held 28–30 March.

Representatives 9f Australia, Bangladesh, France, India, Indonesia, Iran, Kuwait, Malaysia, Pakistan, Qatar, Sri Lanka, UAE, Maldives, Saudi Arabia, and Yemen participated in the meeting.

IOC Executive Secretary Vladimir Ryabinin, Secretary General of the Indian Ocean Commission Charles Andre V. Marimoutou, Chair of IOC Regional Committee for the Central Indian Ocean (IOC INDIO- IX) Rear Admiral (Retd) Md. Khurshed Alam, Vice-Chairs of IOC INDIO Maryam Ghaemi and Saif Al Ghais spoke at the inaugural session.

The foreign minister said this will be a common platform for international and regional cooperation, partnership, dialogue to promote ocean science and services for the Indian Ocean and its coastal communities.

The just concluded UN Water Conference in New York emphasised to protect, preserve and promote waters of rivers, seas and oceans, he said.

The Indian Ocean is one of the world's most important water bodies, with a population of more than 2.6 billion people living in the coastal regions including the member states of the IOC INDIO.

The region's rich marine biodiversity and its economic potential have made it a critical resource for many nations, including Bangladesh.

"Therefore, we must prioritise marine biodiversity conservation and sustainable management practices to ensure the ocean's continued health and productivity," the foreign minister said.

"Blue economy, marine biodiversity conservation, and ocean ecosystem are at the core of the IOC INDIO's work. 

"We recognise the importance of preserving our oceans' biological diversity and are committed to working towards sustainable ocean governance.

"We must focus on conservation efforts, promote sustainable marine resource management, and take steps to mitigate and adapt to the effects of climate change.

"Bangladesh is committed to combating climate change and implementing measures to protect our oceans and coasts," he said.

"The IOC medium-term strategy provides a framework for achieving our shared goals and objectives. 

It recognises the importance of promoting regional cooperation and collaboration to address the challenges facing the Indian Ocean region. 

Bangladesh fully supports the IOC medium-term strategy and is committed to working together with all the member states to achieve our common goals, the foreign minister said.

"I would like to emphasise on the recent development and the importance of the outcome decision on the conservation and sustainable use of marine biodiversity in areas beyond national jurisdiction (BBNJ)," he said.

"We must continue our work together to implement the BBNJ treaty that protects the marine environment and ensures the equitable sharing of benefits arising from the use of marine resources.

"We strongly believe that, like other IOC Sub-Commissions namely IOC AFRICA, WESTPAC, and IOC ARIBE IOC, the elevation of IOC INDIO from a regional committee to a sub-commission will further strengthen our regional cooperation and collaboration.

"It will also provide us with an opportunity to play a more active role in addressing the issues facing the Indian Ocean region," he said, reiterating Bangladesh's commitment to the IOC INDIO's work towards sustainable ocean governance.

"We must continue to work together, share knowledge and resources, and take action to ensure the long-term health and sustainability of the Indian Ocean and its communities," he said.

 There will be separate IOC INDIO youth forum, and Senior Governmental and Regional Officials’ Forum on the sidelines of the conference.